Star Wars – ASCIIfied

This is just frickin cool. I just saw Star Wars Episode IV in nothing but ASCII in a Telnet screen. OMFG. Some creative crazy nuts have turned the entire movie into ASCII art which is now available using Telnet. I absolutely have no clue, as to how the author managed to get so much time to get this movie done. Just plainly mind-blowing.

If you want to see it, open up the command line on your computer(Terminal on OS X, or “CMD” from the run option of your Windows PC) and type “telnet towel.blinkenlights.nl”. Hit enter a few times and sit back with some popcorn to enjoy the show.

Now to push it up a notch and if you are using IP V6, you get the entire movie in color too !

Here’s a sampler.




Good old ASCII never ceases to surprise !

PS : If you do not want to muck around with telnet, go over here to watch the same movie as a Java applet.

Indo-French joint work on Nuclear Power

Read an article on “France agrees to cooperate with India on nuclear power technology“.

I see that our PM, Dr. Manmohan Singh has made nuclear energy one of his prime priorities. Check out an excerpt from the article.

Keeping global energy requirements in mind and the necessity to combat global warming, India and France recognize the need to strengthen energy security and promote the development of stable, sustainable, efficient and affordable energy sources in order to meet their growing energy requirements. Both sides also recognize that nuclear energy provides a safe, environmental friendly and sustainable source of energy and the need to further develop international co-operation in promoting the use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.

France acknowledges the need for full international civilian nuclear co-operation with India and will work towards this objective by working with other countries and the NSG and by deepening bilateral co-operation.

France appreciated India’s strong commitment to preventing WMD proliferation and the ongoing steps it is taking in this regard. In this context, both countries will also work towards conclusion of a bilateral nuclear co-operation agreement.

After the recent trip to Washington in July, this new collaboration is definitely going to take India, up a notch in terms of nuclear power. The potential opening of nuclear power business between India and US has allowed other Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) members like France to start active negotiations with India on supplying nuclear technology, and perhaps fuel as well. I would not be surprised if the next stop for Dr. Singh is Moscow. While I think that these are positive developments, I remain skeptical about how much the cooperation from both these nations is going to be extended keeping in mind the security aspect of the whole thing.

Well, only time will tell us the future scope of these collaborations. Let us see.

Nuclear Now !

A very indepth and thorough article which analyzes the current state of energy production and its detrimental effects on the environment. Then the article looks back into some of the unfortunate accidents that have happened in the past wrt nuclear power. Moving on from there, the author discusses the current state of affairs, the government’s effort to move in the right direction, the current state of research and development in nuclear industry and why, ‘Nuclear Now’ is going to be the only way out in a feasible manner.

Overall, it is a long, interesting article, with some very good arguments, statistics and comparisons that are down-right realistic. I recommend that anyone who is pro-nuclear and everyone who’s not, take a moment to read this to understand why it is necessary and an absolute priority to act on it right now.

Trivia : Defense related

The British government was spooked back in 1935. Not because of Hitler’s air force or his infantry. It was newspaper reports that the Nazis might have a super-weapon that could incinerate living tissue or detonate a bomb at long distance. A “death ray,” the reports called it.

Flooded by letters begging for a response, the British Air Ministry asked prominent physicist Robert Watson-Watt to see if a radio-wave-based death ray was feasible.

Within ten days Watson-Watt reported that such a weapon was unlikely. But using radio waves to locate an approaching bomber was a real possibility. And that’s how radar was born.

Now, seventy years later, the invention may be coming full circle, Aviation Week reports.

Sanity returns

My qualifying exams just got over and after 2 months of continuous preparation, i am happy the way everything went. I have written the test to the best of my knowledge and eventhough i screwed up a few things here and there as usual in the test, i did get the physics right ! That’s gotta count for something ! Fortunately, the graders, the profs only look at the level of understanding in these tests and don’t give full credits for the answer alone. Sweet 🙂

To sum it up, the qualifier exam was an frickin awesome experience and a adrenaline rush like none other. Three hours of intense, non-disturbed indulgence in the test has taught me several things.

– I literally dont think when i write my exams. The hand just writes no matter what else i am dreaming about, as though it knows what it is doing. Beautiful.

– I sing a lot of songs in my mind when i write exams or when i am fully concentrated. This time the addiction was on a song named Navras. More on that piece of beauty later.

Anyway, i am back to the real sane world, where homeworks and research are finally starting to appear at the horizon. The results of the qualifier should be out in another 2 weeks. I am not scared. I think i should pass atleast 2 of the 3 papers.

This experience has been strenuous, painful and masochistically enjoyable ! And i love it.

Upanishad

Verse from Brihadaranyaka Upanishad :

Asatoma sat gamayah,
Tamasoma jyotir gamayah,
Mrityorma amritmam gamayah

Meaning :

Lead me from untruth to Truth,
Lead me from darkness to Light,
Lead me from death to Immortality.

T-3 days

Another countdown. 3 days to D-day.

Will be back next friday with loads of things to blog about and with an update on my exam. Till then, adios.